Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Education and women's life outcomes: Empirical investigation based on evidence from Taiwan
by Chen, I-Chun, Ph.D., State University of New York at Buffalo, 2011, 142; 3440277
Abstract (Summary)

Women's education has been increasing at a faster pace than men's education over the past decades around the world. Especially, female's enrollment rate at the tertiary level has been growing much more rapidly than male's. The driving forces of the number of female college enrollments encompass the market and non-market net returns to college education. In this thesis, I document the demand-side and supply-side forces affecting more women attending college education.

Taiwan experienced rapid economic growth and has been considered a successful model for developing country. During a ten year period, there has been a large increase in the number of universities accompanied by sharply increased female's enrollments in university in that country.

Utilizing the context of Taiwan, I offer complimentary motivating forces previous literature has ignored: greater expansion of higher education which lowers the cost of attending college from supply side of college education and earnings premiums between male and female, marriage benefits and the changes in employment composition for women, children's human capital from demand side of college education. Those forces appear to be the reasons for more females attending college than males.

In addition, one of the market returns, the female labor force participation grows a slower pace over time. Hence, I perform two empirical studies pertaining to market and non-market return to women's education: (1) how large is the effect of women's education on market return, their own labor force participation? And (2) which parent has greater impact on non-market return, child quality?

I utilize the huge expansion of educational opportunities in Taiwan and thus apply IV method to account for the endogeneity of educational attainment. I have discovered that women's education has no strong effect on the probability of a woman's involvement in the labor market. To further explore the reason, I present the implication of women's education for fertility based on the belief of a trade-off between child quality and quantity. The results show that parental education is an important factor in reducing the fertility rate. In addition, mother's schooling is a stronger determinant than a father's schooling. The result also implies that women's education has greater weight on child quality.

Not only the forces from supply side of college education, but those from demand side are also important and sufficient in explaining the remarkable boom in higher education which has been concentrated on women. The context of Taiwan provides different experience from United States because Taiwan can represent the earlier stage of developed economy.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Ehrlich, Isaac
Commitee: Li, Mingliang, Revankar, Nagesh S.
School: State University of New York at Buffalo
Department: Economics
School Location: United States -- New York
Source: DAI-A 72/04, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Economics, Gender studies, Higher education
Keywords: Gender gap, Higher education, Human capital, Return to education
Publication Number: 3440277
ISBN: 9781124474328
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